Thursday, October 15, 2009

On Main Street, February 1960

Let's take a stroll around Main Street, circa 1960. I love this first shot, a "you are there" picture showing the northwest side of the street. There's the Penny Arcade, where you could watch brief "flip book" type movies on the hand-cranked Mutoscope machines, play unique arcade games, test your strength, and even buy ticket books. The Gibson Greeting Cards shop is still there, though it will be replaced by the Hallmark shop pretty soon.

We've walked all the way to the famous "hub", and stop to watch Vesey Walker and the Disneyland Band go by. I wonder if he tended to play more traditional Sousa marches, as opposed to songs like "Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah" or even the "Mickey Mouse Club March"?

Somebody needs to clean the schmutz off of the lens, this picture is pretty blurry (though it gets sharper as you look to the right). But it does give the photo a dreamy quality that I like. And I know it might be considered heresy to say so, but I've never been much of a fan of the "Partners" statue that is now in the same spot as this charming little flower bed. I am a big admirer of Walt Disney, but that statue... yeesh. Somehow I don't think that even Walt himself would dig it. Just my opinion!


TokyoMagic! said...

I would rather see the "Partners" statue somewhere outside the entrance....perhaps in the esplanade. Take out Paul Pressler and Cynthia Harris' "stones" and place it there! I wonder if Anaheim would ever get a copy of the Roy and Minnie statue that Tokyo and Orlando have.

Chiana_Chat said...

It's not just your opinion, Maj!

That pic does have a dreamy spell for me too... I wanna go there *whines* okay I'm better...

Love that shirt on the guy in the 2nd pic, whose wife you'll notice is kindly holding his smelly ole pipe while he fusses with the camera. Oh and she watches the live band marching and he is staring off somewhere else. Maybe he's spellbound by that Mountain like I often am. ;)

I'd also be interested in a glance over the bands' "book" then vs now.

What a nice Main St. vibe in that top pic. The boy crossing the street could hardly have bigger pant cuffs - "he'll grow into 'em!" ...apparently only vertically as with that much to go it seems he's expected to be wearing the same pants for the next ten years.

Somehow I never noticed the "jellies and jams" sign...

Capt. Tomorrow said...

Considering the studio and park had his name on it, yeah, I don't think Walt would have been much of a fan of the statue. But it has to be there, it should be at the Main Street station where Walt would be pointing down Main Street encouraging people to discover what is ahead of them. Now the statue just blocks the view of the castle and subtly points the way to get out.

Hrundi V. Bakshi said...

Yeah, statue at the flagpole, pointing toward the castle. Then put a little motor in the base and have it subtly rotate at night to the left so he's pointing at his apartment.

I kid. That would really creep people out.

Seriously, it's a lovely tribute - but agreed, Walt probably wouldn't have wanted the thing. He didn't make himself the center of attention in his movies or his park. Only in the TV show did he allow the attention to linger on home, and even then - only as host.

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Nice post Major, I could do without the partners statue too. I'm pretty sure Walt wanted flowers there in the middle, since that's the way he had it?

The last shot almost looks like one of those "Tilt-shifting" images that really freak me out!

Katella Gate said...

Color me heretic and burn me at the stake! I never cared for the "Partners" statue either. I have a real problem with humans interacting with cartoon characters. This has to be done with great care (Like Roger Rabbit) or it comes out contrived (like Walter Lantz smiling vacantly at a Woody Woodpecker "sitting" on his shoulder).

Maudlin aspects aside, it blocks the view.

Guerilla said...

Sounds like we have the makings of a hub meet.

I'll bring the dolly, someone will bring a long crowbar, and someone else will bring shovels. We'll get that thing moved to the other end of Main St., and then it's off to the Tiki Room for Dole Whips!

Major Pepperidge said...

I will bring the torches and pitchforks too!

Chiana_Chat said...

Awesome! I agree, front of Main St. if it must be there, pointing to the Fantasyland Castle and wonders ahead and not the way out. I'll ah... co-ordinate. Yeah.

And Dole Whips are on me. Ah. Figuratively. Of course.

Don't forget the spoons, Maj.

mr wiggins said...

Well, a day late to the party, but gotta agree with the Major on the "Partners" statue. Yeesh is right. In the wrong place, pointing the wrong direction, and conceptually just trying' too hard. Yaknowwhaddamean?

And yeah, there was a time not so long ago when 90% of the marches you heard from the Disneyland Band were not Disney tunes, but gen-u-ine early 20th century Americana.

Of course, that was in the days before the Frontierland background music loops featured such evocative tunes of our nation's expansion as the main title themes from "City Slickers," "Blazing Saddles" and "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly."

And a-one-ah, and a-two-ah!